Reserving interstate lanes for the affluent

There has always been something disturbingly elitist about the idea of HOT lanes, also known as high-occupancy toll lanes, also known as Lexus lanes.

The notion that some Americans would be able to drive on uncrowded lanes reserved for those who could pay for the privilege while drivers in the next lane are condemned to bumper-to-bumper traffic — it just doesn’t sit right. It brings to mind that line from “Animal Farm,” about all animals being equal, but some are more equal than others.

The idea is particularly galling if taxpayers who are stuck in traffic are forced to pay for construction of the HOT lanes that they can’t afford to use. And let’s make that clear — the whole idea is to make HOT lanes so expensive that most people won’t be able to use them regularly.

That just doesn’t seem right.

Having said that, however, the concept of HOT lanes does have legitimate, practical applications. For example, new lanes that are built specifically as HOT lanes and financed through tolls collected on those lanes don’t raise the same fairness concerns. In that case, the infrastructure is being paid for by the people using it, and that’s fine.

Here in Georgia, the state Department of Transportation is proposing a second approach. It wants to take existing HOV lanes along a stretch of I-85 — one lane in each direction — and convert them to tolled HOT lanes. Car pools could still use the lanes for free, but single drivers wanting to avoid traffic would also be able to buy their way into the lanes. The toll would vary; in times of heavy traffic, the cost would rise to discourage use and thus keep traffic flowing freely.

Potentially, that’s a useful idea. According to Ginger Gooden, a research engineer at the Texas Transportation Institute, allowing motorists to buy their way into under-used HOV lanes can speed travel, raise revenue and even decrease congestion in remaining general-purpose lanes. She cites studies of such conversions in Seattle and Minneapolis that have documented an improvement in traffic flow even in untolled lanes.

However, the Georgia DOT has more controversial ideas as well. On the Downtown Connector and a stretch of I-20 inside the Perimeter, it proposes to convert both an existing HOV lane and an existing general-purpose lane into toll-only HOT lanes.

If that proposal is approved, it would take an already overburdened highway and shrink its availability even further to the general public. Those lanes — infrastructure already bought and paid for by taxpayers — would be reserved for the exclusive use of those able to pay for that luxury.

According to DOT projections, someone using the high-priced toll lanes during rush hour in 2030 would be able make the 21-mile trip from Pleasant Hill Road to downtown in just 30 minutes. Not bad.

But for the rest of you, it would take 90 minutes.

According to Gooden, no other state has taken the step of converting existing general-purpose lanes to HOT lanes; in fact, she knows of no other states seriously considering such a step.

In his visit to Atlanta last week, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood also expressed surprise the idea was being proposed. He predicted that once people understand the proposal, public outrage would build pretty quickly.

That’s certainly been the pattern here in Georgia. A few years ago, when the DOT proposed converting Ga. 316 to a toll road, the political backlash forced the department to withdraw the idea. To calm the outrage, it also adopted a policy outlawing the conversion of existing lanes to privately financed toll lanes. That policy remains in effect, at least so far.

Overall, the state DOT is studying construction of a whole network of “managed lanes;” if approved, it would represent the department’s most significant transportation investment in metro Atlanta of the next 20 years.
In a presentation to the state Transportation Board last week, DOT planning director Todd Long estimated the cost of the network at $16.2 billion. Private investors would contribute almost $9 billion in return for a cut of the toll revenue, leaving taxpayers to pay the remaining $7 billion.

Given that Georgia is expected to have only $20 billion to spend statewide over the next 20 years, that $7 billion would represent the lion’s share of state spending in metro Atlanta. Spending it on a project that would speed travel for only a relative few makes no sense to me.

242 comments Add your comment

Matilda

September 24th, 2009
4:53 pm

I’m not surprised that Georgia’s current “leaders” would think this is a good idea. That it’s probably the WORST idea I’ve heard yet for alleviating our transportation problems going forward is a good indicator that it may just happen. “Some people matter; the rest of you don’t.” For truth in advertising, they should put that on the Welcome to Georgia signs at the airport.

TnGelding

September 24th, 2009
4:58 pm

Well, damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Why not do somethng to encourage more car-pooling and van-pooling instead? And public transit has to be made convenient, clean and safe.

Kamchak

September 24th, 2009
5:03 pm

The HOV lanes were an after-thought. Without every exit having a corresponding HOV exit, there’s always gonna be some jerk trying to cross six or seven lanes in a quarter of a mile just to get off. I don’t see how changing HOV to HOT is gonna solve this.

DoggoneGA

September 24th, 2009
5:12 pm

“I don’t see how changing HOV to HOT is gonna solve this.”

I should imagine that the plan is to “wall” the lanes off from the regular lanes. How else would you be sure that those who should pay do? I say this every time: what we REALLY need are express lanes similar to what they have in Washington, DC. As far as I know they are free, but you can only get on at a very limited number of places and they are “walled” off from the regular lanes. AND they switch them: IN during morning rush hour, and OUT during evening rush hour.

professional skeptic

September 24th, 2009
5:13 pm

So… here we are, almost one year after the TPB’s “Concept 3″ report was released (tpb.ga.gov), and the only substantive talk we hear at the state level regarding the improvement of transportation in Metro Atlanta amounts to another $16.2 billion to be spent on roads.

Only this time, we’re not talking about more roads. Rather, we’re talking about taking existing lanes on the interstate that have already been paid for by taxpayers, and then asking those same taxpayers for an additional $7 billion to convert them into lanes that most of these taxpayers won’t use. If they DO choose to use these lanes, they’ll have to pay yet again in the form of a toll.

And this reduces traffic how?

Details, details! But wait… A private corporation will gets a hefty cut of the profits, so I suppose that makes everything A-OKAY in the eyes of our esteemed state authority figures.

Kamchak

September 24th, 2009
5:17 pm

DoggoneGA

Walling off is a great idea, but I don’t see them spending that kind of money in this economic climate.

DoggoneGA

September 24th, 2009
5:17 pm

“And this reduces traffic how?”

You’re making the assumption that the goal is to reduce traffic. Of course that’s NOT the goal. The goal is to give the “I got mine” crowd even more of what is “rightly” (get it?) theirs – meaning more of what is actually ALL of ours.

Wyld Byll Hyltnyr

September 24th, 2009
5:19 pm

Frankly, that’s a great idea. Is society better off if everyone sits in traffic or I, and others similarly positioned pay $20 to drive to Pleasant Hill Road? The whole would clearly be better if the few contribute a lot of $. Other than hurt feelings among the ACORN and near ACORN crowd no one would be upset that I have earned a shorter trip – the same way that I have earned nannies and education at the finest schools for my children, a Maui retreat, a country estate, an in-town residence, hot cars, private jet travel, and hot, young chicks on my arm. I do not see why traffic should be the only frontier where my money is not good enough.

DoggoneGA

September 24th, 2009
5:23 pm

“Walling off is a great idea, but I don’t see them spending that kind of money in this economic climate”

Are you kidding? They’ll claim it will “pay for itself” – borrow the money and then stick the taxpayers with the cost that WON’T be covered by the tolls.

Pogo

September 24th, 2009
5:24 pm

Seen the video yet? The cult of personality is being cultivated at a very young age by these Obama-ites. Let’s see, historically, what other leaders and their followers have used these tactics? Oh that’s right, dictators like Hitler, Castro, and Chavez and what’s his name in N. Korea. I have no illusion that Obama was personally not behind this pathetic puppet play but I do believe that he would approve of it. He would never admit to loving it but knowing his egomania, he probably gets really, REALLY stoked by it. Self-enamoured, fascist idealogues always do.

Indoctrination of the minds of the innocent. The hypnotized progressives should be proud of themselves. Even they should be disturbed by this fiasco that happened in NJ.

Kamchak

September 24th, 2009
5:28 pm

They’ll claim it will “pay for itself”…

Well if you’re gonna throw past performance in my face… :wink:

Wyld Byll Hyltnyr

September 24th, 2009
5:29 pm

One thing, the HOT lanes should be closed to athletes, musicians, party promoters and other nouveau riche as this folk have already ruined far too many places for my circle.

Brad Steel

September 24th, 2009
5:32 pm

I will continue to use my gold plated, Medicare provided Rascal to cruse by the little people stuck in traffic.

professional skeptic

September 24th, 2009
5:32 pm

Society would be better off if *MORE* people, not fewer, could spend less time sitting in traffic. Less time sitting in traffic translates to more time available to spend eating out, taking the family to a movie, recreating, etc. I imagine some of that increased economic activity would indeed “trickle up” and help fund additional country estates and Maui retreats. Maybe even some additional clandestine trips to Argentina to scope out more hot chicks.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
5:35 pm

Typical. Taxpayer fund an expensive entity for the select few who can afford it, and not one penny for the 8th largest public transit system in the country.

Typically Republican and typically inane.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

September 24th, 2009
5:36 pm

How about, uh, more lanes, period?

duh

bookman whines about the unfairness of it all but also states that the proposal has merit.

Added lanes reduce traffic congestion.

She cites studies of such conversions in Seattle and Minneapolis that have documented an improvement in traffic flow even in untolled lanes.

Where have we heard this before?

Tank

September 24th, 2009
5:36 pm

I hate to admit it, but this is the FIRST time I’ve agreed with Bookman on an issue. HOT and “Lexus Lanes” are pure BS.

Tamye Bobyie Huntyr

September 24th, 2009
5:39 pm

I have to agree with my old pal and frat brother Wyld Byll. We privileged few with really small wangers need this lane to boost our feelings of insecurity when the young hot chicks we buy laugh at us behind our collectively large arses.

Normal

September 24th, 2009
5:40 pm

Where’s Dusty’s and my stalker Whistlin’? I left him a note downstairs.

Hmmm?

September 24th, 2009
5:41 pm

There seems to be a disconnect in the article’s logic:

Saying …allowing motorists to buy their way into under-used HOV lanes can speed travel, raise revenue and even decrease congestion in remaining general-purpose lanes.

doesn’t seem to jibe with:

Spending it on a project that would speed travel for only a relative few makes no sense to me.

There seems to be reliable evidence that buy-in toll lanes speed up the traffic for everyone. Albeit there is no quote regarding the conversion of an existing non-HOV lane, there is no evidence to the contrary.

Maybe the proposal seems unfair and will goad public outrage, but populist outrage doesn’t really seem to have a strong basis in reality these days.

Cherokee

September 24th, 2009
5:43 pm

I know I will likely regret asking this Pogo, but what in the world are you talking about?

GEORGE AMERICAN

September 24th, 2009
5:45 pm

IT’S A GREAT IDEA. IF THE SLOW-LANE LOSERS DON’T LIKE BEING PAST, THEY CAN COUGH UP SOME PESOS OR KISS MY 12-MPG HUMMER CARBON FOOTPRINT.

CAPTAIN AMERICA

September 24th, 2009
5:49 pm

AND HAVE TO AGRESS WITH MY FELLOW SCREAMING EAGLE ABOVE. I LIKE TO TYPE AND TALK REALLY REALLY LOUD BECAUSE MY WANGER IS SO SMALL I CAN’T EVEN BUY A HOT CHICK

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
5:49 pm

Since $40 million out of a projected $50 million of the cost of the new football museum will be funded by two entities who have no money for it, Atlanta and Georgia, I’m sure they could construct it over teh HOT lanes so the paying customers could drive through the museum.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
5:51 pm

Chicago boy exactly where in the hell do you think those more lanes would be put? It’s a little like getting money for the football museum the city and state don’t have or getting hundreds of thousands of troops for Afghanistan from the United States of Mythical Delusions.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
5:52 pm

Cap America–when you agress do you agree and digress at the same time?

md

September 24th, 2009
5:55 pm

“And public transit has to be made convenient, clean and safe.”

I guess that rules out atl.

mike

September 24th, 2009
5:56 pm

Here is a nice article about truly violent protesters, only they are left-wing.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article6848176.ece

I guess all of the “protesters are racists” crowd will denounce liberal pundits for this violence in the same way they blame conservative pundits for the “angry” conservative protesters (who seem to be far less angry and violent than their left-wing counterparts).

GEORGE AMERICAN

September 24th, 2009
5:57 pm

CAP’N UNAMERICAN,
OH I CAN BUY ‘EM. BUT I DON’T NEED TO. NOT WITH THE HUMMER AND THE GUNS!!! I CAN’T KEEP ‘EM AWAY.

BUT WHAT WOULD YOU KNOW??? YOU COWARD BED-WETTING LIBERAL!!!

mike

September 24th, 2009
5:58 pm

CAPTAIN AMERICA -

Yeah, not only is the “parody” completely lame, the shouting in caps and bold is totally obnoxious.

It’s bad enough when intolerant folks like George and Redneck Convert do their ignorant stereotypes. It is even worse when George feel the need to scream his bigotry at us.

mike

September 24th, 2009
6:00 pm

GEORGE AMERICAN –

I live in midtown and a large percentage of the Hummers and other SUVs I see are driven by black folks. Unless these folks are the some of the few conservative black folks, they are likely to be liberal like you, so spare us you childish and incorrect stereotypes.

Pogo

September 24th, 2009
6:02 pm

Cherokee,

Youtube: Children sing the praise of Barack Obama. Happened on 09/02 in a NJ elementary school. Scary stuff no matter what political persuasion you are. Saw something akin to it on the History Channel when the subject was German children singing the praise of Hitler in the 1940’s. The teacher in the video was involved with Obama’s campaign and is the author of a Children’s book titled “I am Barack Obama”. I do not like adults with an agenda playing with the minds of children. Let them be children for God’s sake. Adults that are not the childrens parents that play with their minds are the lowest form of life on this planet.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:02 pm

The 16000 people near Atlanta and in Atlanta who filed claims for damages from flooding to companies where they have no flood insurance must have gotten that bright idea from the 14000 people a day in the US who get their insurance dropped when they get sick.

They’ll get an excellent idea of how that feels very very soon.

mike

September 24th, 2009
6:06 pm

Public Option’s Doing Swell –

Huh? Looking for flood payouts from companies with whom you have no flood policy is like losing your insurance when you get sick?

Michael

September 24th, 2009
6:07 pm

This is uberconservatism at its worst. These are the kind of things that extreme free market principles will bring you. As Jay said, if we already paid to put roads in through tax money, they shouldn’t be changed to profit centers. Also, HOT lanes aren’t about reducing traffic. They’re about reducing money. Carpool lanes can encourage the same amount of people into fewer cars on the same roads. HOT lanes just force you to pay more money.

We need a lot of new lanes/roads and a lot more mass transit. Places like Ga. Highway 316 are sitting there just waiting for money to be expanded because there’s room along that road for at least 4 lanes each way. But when you talk I-285, I-85 and I-75, there’s no room left. That’s when you have to reduce the amount of cars either through carpools or transit. If MARTA were to work its rail line up the I-85 corridor, we could get a LOT of cars off that road in rush hour. Same goes with the East Line going out I-20. I’m all for the Brain Train because the tracks are already there and it would be the cheapest to get started, but we’re going to need a LOT of commuter rail or businesses will leave.

Why many Atlanta-area residents keep sitting in traffic day after day and don’t elect leaders who will change things is beyond me.

mike

September 24th, 2009
6:08 pm

Folks like George American and Redneck Convert are pathetic. They have nothing to contrbute to the conversation except letting us know that they hate people who don’t share their narrow views. The worst part is how much effort they go to to say absolutely nothing.

md

September 24th, 2009
6:08 pm

“Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick said Wednesday that he has instructed state employees to stop doing business with Hyatt hotels until it rehires 100 housekeepers it fired last month.”

Another wonderful knee jerk reaction by those in power. Force the hotels to lay off the rest of their employees – that’ll teach em.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:11 pm

Why does Georgia have the 8th largest transit system in the country and refuse to fund it for 27 years?

Seems like they’re bighting nose to spite face since it’s been well documented that Atlanta has been losing company after company to Dallas and Charlotte to name a couple.

mike

September 24th, 2009
6:12 pm

Yay, now Public Option’s Doing Swell is on the pathetic and ignorant stereotyped “parody” game.

Actually. Public Option is revealing how much he is like the parody he is doing. He is just as hateful and intolerant as any Obama critic. Obama’s most ignorant critics call him a socialist. Public Option calls any who disagrees with his narrow minded views as a racist.

The only difference between the mindless and hateful conservative partisans and Public Option is that they hate different people. Other than that, they are the same: hateful, ignorant and intolerant.

Taxpayer

September 24th, 2009
6:12 pm

So, Jay, under this new half-baked GOP (in association with Georgia businesses) scheme, executives of companies would be sitting at ‘work’, likely in near empty meeting rooms, waiting hours for the lowly underlings that do the real work to show up and give all those presentations so the executives can make their decisions and move on to the next big task of the day, golf course, svedish sauuuna, etc. Somehow, I find that end result strangely appealing. How long before the executives start offering to pay the toll for the underlings. :roll:

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:13 pm

Or is it bitin’?

An awful lot of people who commute from Gwinette, North Fulton and Cobb could use public transit and clear that congestion.

DoggoneGA

September 24th, 2009
6:13 pm

“The worst part is how much effort they go to to say absolutely nothing.”

But, OF COURSE, you’re bitching about it is of the UTMOST interest, RIGHT? Guess again.

mike

September 24th, 2009
6:13 pm

“Seems like they’re bighting nose to spite face since it’s been well documented that Atlanta has been losing company after company to Dallas and Charlotte to name a couple.”

What crap. We just added a big development lab from RIM and landed the College Football Hall of Fame.

Companies are moving here, not leaving here. You have no idea what you are talking about.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:14 pm

If we build the new football museum over the Hot Lanes, then the executives could spend their time learning NFL and College trivia.

mike

September 24th, 2009
6:14 pm

DoggoneGA –

Thanks for the Pavlovian response, complete with the shouting in caps.

Have you ever directed a post at me that has more than two sentences together? Please, you bore me,

Road Scholar

September 24th, 2009
6:17 pm

Pogo: Get it under control; Obama has nothing to do with this!

Jay, one think you missed is that the HOV to Managed lane idea calls for a free ride in the managed lanes for HOV 3: that is to ride free, you must have at least 3 people in the car. Buses would be able to use these lanes free of charge.

GDOT Board policy states that no previously operating SOV lanes can be used /converted to HOV/Managed lanes. That would have to be chaged for the manage lane “take over” to occur.

In the original HOV Strategic Plan conducted by GDOT, seperate HOV interchanges were proposed, since the existing SOV interchanges are operating at a poor level of service.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:18 pm

Nope Mike. A lot of them are refusing to move here in fact. You want to force me to pull links from ABC’s account of speeches delivered at the Chamber of Commerce type meetings, or the AJC’s accounts in the last few months? Do you just look at the pics in the newspaper, or get all your news from Faux Noise? They cite traffic and schools as the main reason for not locating and it’s easy to find the articles. You can’t just make it up the way you did earlier.

We also lost Dell and we lost a panoply of plants and they told us why and they have come to meetings to talk about it for two years–traffic and schools. A broken clock is right twice a day.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:19 pm

Are you privately funding that $40 million dollars that the broke state and broke city won’t talk about to pay for the Football Museum Mike? Can we name it Mike?

DoggoneGA

September 24th, 2009
6:19 pm

“complete with the shouting in caps”

YOU’RE WELCOME. GLAD YOU ENJOYED IT. AND TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTION: WHEN YOU SAY SOMETHING WORTH MORE THAT TWO SENTENCES YOU’LL GET IT.

Pogo

September 24th, 2009
6:19 pm

PO, some pretty offensive words and inflections you are spouting up there. Of course, you are no stranger to offensive babble are you? Do you really like adults with political agendas playing with childrens minds? If you do, you are as pathetic as I already thought you were. Your bitterness is very, very deep, isn’t it?

In keeping with your own writing style, I offer the following; I surmise that your life is pretty much summed up by “Somebody done did me wrong, and I gonna make dim pay”.

md

September 24th, 2009
6:19 pm

“An awful lot of people who commute from Gwinette, North Fulton and Cobb could use public transit and clear that congestion.”

Until its safe, it will remain underutlized. And safety is doubtful anytime soon. I recently had a friend that returned to a Marta lot to find his windows smashed in and the radio missing from the dash. Marta’s response – so sorry, sucks to be you.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:20 pm

Ah think evrahthing would be okay with Metro traffic if it weren’t for &%$@ Acorn.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:22 pm

What happened to your friend can happen any place a car is parked, particularly outside in a public place. And I’m betting you don’t take MARTA ever, and don’t have a clue about its safety.

From what I’ve seen over the years, the interstates are pretty damn dangerous around here.

Ray

September 24th, 2009
6:22 pm

I love it, but I love the vote not to extend unemployment benefits even better. This will, inevitably, kill off a boat load of the lazy free-loaders who don’t want to work in the first place. This country and it’s freedoms are for those of us who worked for them, those of us who can afford them. The rest here are next to worthless, here only to serve. And when they cease to do that, they can cease to exist. The idea that I no longer have to rub bumpers with those who don’t perish is just icing on the cake. The rest of the nation ought take note. God Bless America. God Bless Georgia. God Bless mike.

DoggoneGA

September 24th, 2009
6:23 pm

“Yay, now Public Option’s Doing Swell is on the pathetic and ignorant stereotyped “parody” game”

There you go Mike…did your standard response for you so you can avoid being accused of being “Pavlovian”

Taxpayer

September 24th, 2009
6:23 pm

md

September 24th, 2009
6:08 pm
“Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick said Wednesday that he has instructed state employees to stop doing business with Hyatt hotels until it rehires 100 housekeepers it fired last month.”

Another wonderful knee jerk reaction by those in power. Force the hotels to lay off the rest of their employees – that’ll teach em.

Smart move. I would not want to stay there knowing that they got rid of the folks that clean the rooms. ewwwwww.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:24 pm

When I’ve seen the MARTA lots they look pretty full. I think your friend was an unfortunate statistic.

AmVet

September 24th, 2009
6:25 pm

MARTA has a good safety record.

Methinks there is something else afoot…

melancholy, melodious, moody, miserable mournful mike

September 24th, 2009
6:26 pm

Mainly the mimicking malcontents are not more than mildly amusing, but for me, mikey, I mostly rely on mirthless and mindless maligning of merriment.

Jackie

September 24th, 2009
6:28 pm

@Ray

Wonder what your unemployed neighbor would say about your being glad he will not have an opportunity to take care of his family, through no fault of his own.

Wonderful person, you are!

DoggoneGA

September 24th, 2009
6:28 pm

” I would not want to stay there knowing that they got rid of the folks that clean the rooms. ewwwwww”

No kidding!

Taxpayer

September 24th, 2009
6:28 pm

“Somebody done did me wrong, and I gonna make dim pay”.

Is that Billy Ray Cyrus’s latest hit.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:28 pm

Well spoken Ray like a true American tryin’ to take back mah country with me. All them people who worked for companies during the best years of their lives and got laid off with their pensions trashed don’t deserve any “freedoms” which should be allocated by you. Of course they’re worthless.

Why don’t we just incinerate them?

You shouldn’t be bothered to rub your bumper with anyone’s bumper but Sarah Palin and Katy Abram–or Joe the fake plumber. Your sophistication just bleeds.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:34 pm

I live for your fact filled posts Doggone, and your unparalleled grasp of just about anything.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:35 pm

LOL Doggone would have rathered I just said more people bring the stupid here than anywhere else?

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

September 24th, 2009
6:36 pm

Well, this seems like a fine idea. It will make the bums that don’t make much money get off of their duff and start trying to make more so they can afford to go on this lane for rich folks and get to where they’re going faster. Us Conservatives beleive money talks and the guvmint should just butt out and let us make more of it by taking away these taxes. Maybe they could just build a special walking path for the people that got no money. And maybe they should hire valets to park the cars of the people that travel the HOT lane.

It’s beginning to sound like mike don’t like me much. Bookman should step in and put a stop to him calling me and others pathetic. I thought that was illegal on this blog. Anyway, I don’t never call mike names. Have a good night everybody.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:37 pm

From the looks of these posts, the parody is right on point and the stereotyping of the right wingnut whackjob intolerants is precise.

DoggoneGA

September 24th, 2009
6:38 pm

“and your unparalleled grasp of just about anything.”

Now see, you’re going to criticize and all I did was try to make things easier for Mikey.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

September 24th, 2009
6:39 pm

As a real general put it a century ago, “The purpose of an Army is to fight.” And the purpose of going to war is to win (that dirty word). It’s not to sacrifice our own troops to make sad-sack do-gooders back home feel good.-Ralph Peters, NY Posy.

That was a century ago, when being a coward was not a badge of honor.

md

September 24th, 2009
6:39 pm

” And I’m betting you don’t take MARTA ever, and don’t have a clue about its safety.”

I’ll take that bet, how much ya want to lose.

And the “safety” also includes getting to and from the trains/buses. The kids at GSU and GaTech are getting mugged by the boatloads, where have you 2 been.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:40 pm

To be just a little realistic, I don’t see how the HOT lanes can possibly fly given the very current DOT funding reports.

jconservative

September 24th, 2009
6:41 pm

I will consider this as soon as the the state returns the homestead exemption it eliminated. How about stop spending until we get some money to spend? The State of Georgia’s credit card is about maxed out.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:41 pm

I Report have you been out demonstrating to get the Draft going tomorrow?

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

September 24th, 2009
6:42 pm

The Obama administration has decided not to seek new legislation from Congress authorizing the indefinite detention of about 50 terrorism suspects being held without charges at at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, officials said Wednesday.

Instead, the administration will continue to hold the detainees without bringing them to trial based on the power it says it has under the Congressional resolution passed after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, authorizing the president to use force against forces of Al Qaeda and the Taliban.Washington Post

Bwahahahahahahaha.

How’d you like that one, Code Pinko?

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:43 pm

Whoa hey hey. We gots the money for that $40 million kick-in for the football museum. We gots our priorities here. Screw roads and healthcare and screw making the resevori system so it doesn’t dump feces into the rivers. We needs the football museum.

I remember 2 years ago when there was a big hoopla about a Medical History museum. That project went South fast.

md

September 24th, 2009
6:43 pm

“Smart move. I would not want to stay there knowing that they got rid of the folks that clean the rooms. ewwwwww.”

yea right – they have others doing the cleaning. But that won’t save the jobs of the current employees when the state causes them to be laid off with their boycott. Its childish and stupid.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

September 24th, 2009
6:44 pm

Speaking of parodies, does Mad Harris ever stfu?

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
6:45 pm

What I like is that the best litigator to prevent indefinite detention happening is now in the schizophrenic position of filing briefs that argue against his own briefs that he filed 12 months ago–one Neal Katyal from Georgetown law now the Deputy SG.

The Obama administration is starting to lose every one of those illegal stances, just like Senor Bushie did when Neal whupped up on him. Neal will lose against his old self in what has to be one very interesting situation for a killer litigator.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

September 24th, 2009
6:47 pm

A hanging question and an answer for it-

“No nation can or should try to dominate another nation,” Obama intoned. “No world order that elevates one nation or group of people over another will succeed. No balance of power among nations will hold.”

Has an American president ever expressed such implicit hostility toward his own nation’s pre-eminence in world affairs?-Rich Lowry, NY Post

Well, he does hate us.

md

September 24th, 2009
6:47 pm

“What happened to your friend can happen any place a car is parked, particularly outside in a public place”

Funny you should say that, but he said it never happened when he drove to work and parked at his office. Wonder why that is.

AmVet

September 24th, 2009
6:48 pm

“And the “safety” also includes getting to and from the trains/buses. The kids at GSU and GaTech are getting mugged by the boatloads, where have you 2 been.”

WOW!

Using such “logic”, the air safety numbers would take a beating (get it md?) when one factored in all those people getting hurt and killed when driving from gawd knows where to get to the airport.

md

September 24th, 2009
6:53 pm

“Using such “logic”, the air safety numbers would take a beating (get it md?) when one factored in all those people getting hurt and killed when driving from gawd knows where to get to the airport.”

No comparison considering to get to Marta’s stations these kids have to navigate the predators, many of which stalk out the same stations. Last I checked, people wern’t getting mugged in their cars on the way to the airport.

AmVet

September 24th, 2009
6:54 pm

Oh the maddening “parodizing” that goes on here!

It is to me hysterical that the self-righteous get their knickers in such a twist over it.

That damned pesky First Amendment. With a little luck it will go the way of habeus corpus…

mike

September 24th, 2009
6:59 pm

Public Option’s Doing Swell –

“Nope Mike. A lot of them are refusing to move here in fact. You want to force me to pull links from ABC’s account of speeches delivered at the Chamber of Commerce type meetings, or the AJC’s accounts in the last few months?”

Yes, please do.

“Do you just look at the pics in the newspaper, or get all your news from Faux Noise?”

This is an ignorant and useless statement.

” They cite traffic and schools as the main reason for not locating and it’s easy to find the articles.”

Then do so.

“You can’t just make it up the way you did earlier.”

Didn’t make a thing up. Please tell me what I made up.

“We also lost Dell and we lost a panoply of plants and they told us why and they have come to meetings to talk about it for two years–traffic and schools.”

Can’t find any source for this. Please provide one.

“A broken clock is right twice a day.”

Well then broken clocks have an edge on you. Provide some sources for your blather.

mike

September 24th, 2009
7:02 pm

Public Option –

“Whoa hey hey. We gots the money for that $40 million kick-in for the football museum. We gots our priorities here. ”

You are showing you ignorance. Mayne if you were knowledgeable you would know how important tourism and conventions are to Atlanta’s economy.

“Screw roads and healthcare and screw making the resevori system so it doesn’t dump feces into the rivers. We needs the football museum.”

Please explain how moving a major attraction here is taking away from any of these projects. As usual, you are just venting hate.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
7:03 pm

At least Andy you’re starting to read about Obama’s positions in court, and if you keep it up you’ll realize he’s taking the same stands exactly that Bush took in the area you reference above–indefinite detention, warantless wiretapping, against revision of FISA ( a bill is in the Senate) and State Secrets as an knee-jerk shield for any way the gov screws a prisoner who is released after no evidence is found and 8 years of solitary and torture.

mike

September 24th, 2009
7:06 pm

Public Option’s Doing Swell –

“… State Secrets as an knee-jerk shield for any way the gov screws a prisoner who is released after no evidence is found and 8 years of solitary and torture.”

Only three terrorists were waterboarded. You expecting innocent old Khalid Sheik Mohammed to be released soon?

PJ

September 24th, 2009
7:08 pm

They have this system in the Minneapolis area on one of their freeways. These lanes are walled off as suggested on a different comment, and not in other areas. If you are a driver who wishes to participate in the HOT lane program, you have to register for it. You then get a sensor that you would place in your car. Costs are based on specified distances, usually by the mile, and get be quite steep depending on the level of traffic. If there are a great deal of legitimate car poolers, then the rate is extremely high, several dollars to drive one mile. There are state patrol units stationed along the route, and there numerous video cameras also monitoring. If you have not registered for the program and enter the HOV/HOT lane, the fine through the roof. I do not know of the successes or failures of the program as I no longer live there. I would guess that they still have their traffic woes even with the program. They’ve had metered ramps in Minneapolis for years, and they’ve done little to solve the problem… just like here.

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
7:08 pm

@ Mike–

We’ve had a number of situations like the football museum before. The hype about tourism dollars never panned out. The finances are $10 million (maybe) in private funds–the rest from Georgia and the city. Last time I checked, the city is in tough financial straits with layoffs and the state has been laying off a number of people from agencies including Public Defender, DAs, Judicial, and several others.

You’re projecting delusions again. I hate what? Football? Museums

If private funding wants to put up that museum fine. Atlanta and Georgia will be taking a big gamble with no guarantee, and nothing new there. Hell Purdue threw away $8.5 million paying outside counsel for a sure loss on the water appeal when Supreme Court precedent was clearly in place. He’s going to no pun p_ss away a lot more. And if there is a tenth amendment choo choo train of federal appellate litigation that will be millions of dollars for another stupid lost cause.

LOL

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
7:13 pm

@ PJ–

Traffic was backed up on the I-35 W bridge that collapsed. That highly regulated heavily policed system you described sounds expensive and again I don’t see why taxpapyers should fund something relatively few would use or could afford when the taxpayers’ representatives racially refuse to fund public transit and are the only state to do so.

GEORGE AMERICAN

September 24th, 2009
7:19 pm

mike
YOU ARE SO SMART AND INSIGHTFUL. PLEASE, WE ARE WAITED WITH BAIT-N-BREATH AT YOUR NEXT DEMONSTRATION OF YOUR RETARDEDNESS!!!

PLEASE SAY SOMETHING ITELLIGENT, LIKE A QUOTE FROM THE GLENN BECK BOOK OR SHOW!!!

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

September 24th, 2009
7:19 pm

Mad Harris- You reckon?

So what happen to the thunder and fury in the kampaign about mistreatment and the civil rights of detainees? And just imagine, he had the exact same accusatory position against himself yesterday at the UN.

All just hot air blowing for the kult?

Maybe he’s illiterate?

Public Option's Doing Swell

September 24th, 2009
7:21 pm

Mike you don’t have a clue who or how many were “waterboarded” because that information ain’t yours. And hundreds were tortured and State Secrets is used in every law suit that has been filed by people released by the Bush administration. I don’t know where you get your classified torture information, but the filings I see are in open courts in places like the ND California and other federal districts.

The biggest case for the Obama administration was argued yesterday morning in Judge Vaugh Walker’s courtroom in ND Cal.

As to Holder’s policy that ole Andy Chitown invoked, it is being immediately challenged in court by ACLU and the current Deputy Solicitor General’s old collegues before he went to work for the government at the Center for Constitutional Rights.

http://ccrjustice.org/

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

September 24th, 2009
7:22 pm

Obozo is a common moron, nothing more, nothing less.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

September 24th, 2009
7:25 pm

Ever wonder why no charges have ever been brought for “water boarding,” only huge releases of hot air?

You seem enthralled and swept up in the propaganda gasbagging, Mad, did they send you your lapel button yet?

mike

September 24th, 2009
7:27 pm

Public Option’s Doing Swell –

“We’ve had a number of situations like the football museum before. The hype about tourism dollars never panned out. ”

Yes like the Medical Museum which was a stupid idea that nobody cared about. The Aquarium dumps about $200 million a year into the Atlanta economy.

“The finances are $10 million (maybe) in private funds–the rest from Georgia and the city.”

Yes, there is 5 million from Chick-fil-a and 5 million from the Chick-fil-a Bowl. What is the source for the rest of your statement?

“Last time I checked, the city is in tough financial straits with layoffs and the state has been laying off a number of people from agencies including Public Defender, DAs, Judicial, and several others.”

Yes and this attraction will bring in tax revenue and create jobs that will bring in more tax revenue.

What is your point?

“You’re projecting delusions again. I hate what? Football? Museums”

No. As your ignorant stereotyped comments show you hate Georgians who don’t share your ill-informed views. Who else were you directing your bigoted minstrel show at?

“If private funding wants to put up that museum fine. Atlanta and Georgia will be taking a big gamble with no guarantee, and nothing new there.”

Yes and we have such a guarantee that the public option that you worship will not end up costing us too. Please let me know what other major projects have guaranteed outcomes.

“Hell Purdue threw away $8.5 million paying outside counsel for a sure loss on the water appeal when Supreme Court precedent was clearly in place.”

And this is relevant because Perdue is a Republican or something?

“He’s going to no pun p_ss away a lot more. And if there is a tenth amendment choo choo train of federal appellate litigation that will be millions of dollars for another stupid lost cause.”

Yes we need to put government money into sure successes like the massive stimulus/pork bill or your dear public option. LOL

thomas

September 24th, 2009
7:29 pm

public option,

Do you have anything to back up the claim of yours that the representatives are basing their decision to not fund public trans. because they are racist, or that their motives are race related?

Or are you just engaging in some good ole fashioned slander and lies?

mike

September 24th, 2009
7:32 pm

Public Option’s Doing Swell –

“Mike you don’t have a clue who or how many were “waterboarded” because that information ain’t yours. And hundreds were tortured”

Right, so I don’t have the numbers but you do. LOL.

” and State Secrets is used in every law suit that has been filed by people released by the Bush administration.”

And the Obama admin, but who cares about that. I mean he is a Democrat and hence above criticism.

“I don’t know where you get your classified torture information, but the filings I see are in open courts in places like the ND California and other federal districts.”

Hmm, you mean that if a terrorism suspect claims he was tortured, he was certainly tortured. You do know that the AQ manual instructs captives to claim they were tortured whether they were or not, don’t you?

I notice that you get your “facts” from the Center for Constitutional Rights. You sneer about other people’s news sources and you rely on hyper-liberal outlets for your information? LOL

thomas

September 24th, 2009
7:33 pm

Public,
those filing law suits claiming they were tortured……..
Could they possibly be lying, or do you think that all who file such suits are honest and without deception?

If you do think that all claims are fact, did you feel that Obama was not a citizen since it has been filed in a law suit?

Ray

September 24th, 2009
7:34 pm

GEORGE,

I’d expect no less from a typical lib who thinks he’s funny. mike ought charge you for lessons tonight. People like you ought have to pay to comment. All you do is detract from those of us who actually make America work. At the very least you should read Glenn Beck. The man is brilliant and because of his patriotic efforts this great nation will never fall to socialists like yourself.

Report/Whine,

You do the cause no favors by being a jerk.